By Enddy Ziyera, Correspondent in Zimbabwe, Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT), 08 February 2019, www.thecommunists.net
After the general strike that was called by the ZCTU and fraternal organizations, the political situation remains dire. Basically we are sitting on a quick sands political situation.
The reactionary Mnangagwa-Chiwenga government was shaken to the core by the general strike. It was a serious reality check situation which apparently left it with an egg on their faces.
The country is on a knife edge and can explode again any time. The brutal government clamp down against labour, civil society, opposition members and general public is a clear sign the rulers are in a state of fear of citizens.
Interestingly there is a new narrative, unforeseen previously, that the government is clearly afraid of the people while a new generation of youths who are clearly not afraid of the state and its apparatus of fear and coercion is on the scene.
The general strike was called by the labour movements, however those who came out to "enforce" the strike were mostly young people aged between 16 and 19 years. They faced the brutal army, police and ZANU-PF youths on the streets for a full week causing the state apparatus to retreat.
The state chose to instil fear by causing mass arrests of protesters, non-protesters, civic leaders, and political activists. Soldiers and ZANU-PF youths were unleashed against the citizens and committed crimes against humanity such as rape and murder. The judiciary is seriously compromised as it has become an extension of brutality. A number of lawyers demonstrated recently against the capture of the judiciary.
Having used rural force to try and suppress the strike, the government seriously undermined its own standing before its peers, i.e. SADC, the African Union, and globally. It has assumed a pariah state status worse than that of old Robert Mugabe had.
Pressure is mounting against the regime with the South African trade union COSATU conducting a solidarity march with Zimbabwean people yesterday briefly closing the Beitbridge border post. Most trade unions in Africa have joined in calling the rogue Zimbabwe government to order.
However, fear remains in the minds of many people and they are afraid to partake or join the strike action if it is called again.
While the strike action shook the establishment, the action could have been more successful if all stakeholders in the struggle had joined hands.
Grounds for a massive action are ripe and ready to be exploited, however, the actors are scattered and choose to act solo. Health staff including doctors has gone on strike twice and no fraternal solidarity was extended to them save for a few press statements. Currently teachers are on strike again and we see no active solidarity again. The government takes advantage of this scattered approach to issues and easily deals with sectoral approach.
During the strike the issue of ideology was lacking. A communist ideology is most needed now than ever before. I have alluded earlier to the issue that young people carried the strike on their shoulders as they are the most affected by the shrinking economy. However, the youths and many young workers of today lack the ideological grounding that should prepare them for struggle. This is the time for RCIT and like minded organizations to spread the communist gospel because the time for another class revolution in Zimbabwe is upon us.
There is a massive a massive groundswell of dejection and rejection of the governments’ neoliberal policies like the raising of the fuel price from $1.41 to $3.50 which has made the price of basics to rise sharply again. The command economy premised on state brutality, war against informal traders, and a deteriorating political and economic situation renders the country ready for another revolution. That government is trying to suppress the revolution by pre-emptive strikes against workers, traders, political activists but this will not prevent the next revolution.
As we move, we expect to experience more state brutality using the army to suppress the people. However, due to poor governance by ZANU-PF government in the last 39 years, there is a new generation that has nothing to lose from taking the government head on because they have been completely cut off from accessing any meaningful opportunities for development. This is an angry generation which is also ready to embrace communist ideology as an alternative to the neoliberal world order.
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We would like to draw the reader’s attention to a number of statements and articles which the RCIT has published on Zimbabwe in the last period:
* Zimbabwe: Stop the Repression! Neither ZANU-PF nor MDC – for an independent political alternative of the workers and oppressed! 4 August 2018, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/stop-the-repression-in-zimbabwe/
* The Military Coup in Zimbabwe and the Role of Chinese Imperialism, 29 November 2017, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/the-military-coup-in-zimbabwe-and-the-role-of-chinese-imperialism/
* The Current Political Crisis in Zimbabwe and the Slogan of the Revolutionary Constituent Assembly, 24 November 2017, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/crisis-in-zimbabwe-and-the-slogan-of-the-revolutionary-constituent-assembly/
* Zimbabwe: The Fall of Mugabe – Victory for the Masses or for the Military-ZANU-PF Alliance? 22.11.2017, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/zimbabwe-after-the-resignation-of-mugabe/
* Zimbabwe: Down with the Military Coup! No to the dynastic Mugabe Regime! For Independent Workers’ and Poor Mobilisations! For Action Committees of the Workers, Poor Peasants and Soldiers to Advance the Struggle against All Factions of the Ruling Elite! 15.11.2017, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/africa-and-middle-east/against-mugabe-and-military-coup-in-zimbabwe/